Panama Papers scandal: Pak FM appears before court

SansadTV Bureau
File Photo: Pakistan's Finance Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar.

File Photo of Pakistan’s Finance Minister Mohammad Ishaq Dar

Pakistan’s Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, who is also a close aide of ousted prime minister Nawaz Sharif’s, appeared before the Pakistan anti-corruption court in connection with the Panama Papers scandal.

Dar has been indicted by National Accountability Court for owning wealth and assets beyond his known sources of income.

This was Dar’s seventh appearance before the court.

At the hearing, the anti-corruption watchdog National Accountability Bureau (NAB) prosecution presented two new witnesses against the 67-year-old minister, the Dawn reported.

On September 8, NAB had filed the case against Dar following the July 28 verdict of the Supreme Court in the Panama Papers case that indicted Sharif and his family.

The apex court had disqualified Sharif and ordered corruption cases against him, his children Maryam, Husain and Hasan and son-in-law Muhammad Safdar.

File Photo: Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif waves as he appears outside the premises of Joint Investigation Team in Islamabad, Pakistan, Thursday, June 15, 2017. Sharif appeared before a Supreme Court-appointed team investigating allegations against his family's offshore companies and money laundering.

File Photo: Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif waves as he appears outside the premises of Joint Investigation Team in Islamabad, Pakistan, Thursday, June 15, 2017. Sharif appeared before a Supreme Court-appointed team investigating allegations against his family’s offshore companies and money laundering.

The first witness, Abdul Rehman Gondal, branch manager of a private bank’s parliament branch, has completed his statement and is being cross-examined by Dar’s counsel Khawaja Haris, the report said.

Gondal provided details of the account held by Dar in the bank.

The second witness, Masood Ghani, the operations manager in a private bank, gave his testimony regarding Dar’s bank record. His cross-examination could not be completed and the court ordered him to appear in the next hearing with the record sought by the defence counsel.

According to reports, the hearing was adjourned till October 30.

On October 19, the anti-graft court had indicted Sharif, his daughter and son-in-law in a corruption case related to the Avenfield properties in London.

(With inputs from agencies)